Sunday, October 25, 2009

at the taco bell drive thru

after a long day of food and wine festival, status and rehearsal, jeanne and i pull up into our default late night dive which you might have heard of: taco bell.

where: drive-thru of some off-the-grid taco bell in kissimmee. this is probably the world's most inaccessible taco bell. an entj did not design the layout of the parking lot to taco bell. 13 right turns later, we arrived at the drive-thru.

taco bell guy: (to jeanne, handing her a water and a pepsi plus some change) here you go, ma'am.
jeanne: oh, you don't need to "ma'am" me.
taco bell guy: excuse me?
jeanne: you don't need to "ma'am" me. (insert southern belle charm)
taco bell guy: okay, sweetie. (returns 2 minutes later with our order of one chicken burrito, one bean burrito-no-sauce-no-onion and one soft-taco-with-no-lettuce) here ya go. you want any sauce, honey?
jeanne: mild and fire, please. thanks, doll.
mel: yes, thanks, sugarpop.
taco bell guy: you have a nice night, sweet cakes.
jeanne: (laughter) g'night!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Back to My First Blog Love: Dexter

So many of you know that from the days of Yore (and Yore was a very important era in colonial America, as Rachel Green would attest to), I used to provide frequent, in-depth analyses of episodes of Dexter. Seasons 1 and 2 miraculously unlocked the floodgates of inspiration and I took great pleasure in dissecting nuances, analyzing characters and hypothesizing potential plot twists, all with the fervent zeal of a new lover.

Sadly, the well-intentioned, promising but (in my humble opinion) poorly executed mess otherwise known as Season 3 decisively ended my love affair with blogging about Dexter.

Thanks to this past pivotal Season 4, Episode 4 "Dex Takes a Holiday," Dexter Blogs and I are now officially an item, reunited.

Speaking of which. Relationships. Relationships in this series have ironically always proven central. Dexter's relationship and view of Harry continues to evolve, especially now as Daddy Harry serves more as a spirit guide, a moral conscience. Well as morally conscious as a man who trained a serial killer to hide his true nature can be. Harry is the Obi Wan Kenobi to Dexter's Luke Skywalker. You can almost hear him whispering in Dex's ear, "Run, Dex, Run!"

And run, he might have to, though not in the traditional sense. In Season 4, the writers have cleverly taken us down this pathway of exploring what domestic bliss, with all its suburban restraints and charms, will do to Dexter and his stealthy extracurricular activities. I've loved every second of seeing Dexter squirm, not necessarily from the cat-and-mouse game of possibly getting caught, but how his own choices and lifestyle seem to be working against him. It's almost like Dexter is a Grand Master, playing chess with himself and checkmating himself all the while. It's not the police or prosecuting attorney out to get him, expose him, or even kill him. It's about Dexter's choices to come a father, a husband and an integrated member of civil society that keeps Dexter on his toes, sweating every possible minute.

In some ways, this show is becoming a surprisingly incisive, dark humored take on the American dream and the sanitized, suburban American way. It almost makes me think of the mid-life or quarter life crisis pandemic that seems to hit a culture overwhelmed with the curse of too many options, and a universal assumption to assert individualism and personal self-fulfillment.

But I digress.

There were so many great moments in this episode for me. When Quinn told that reporter (or Smokin' Hot Reporter Lady as some of my guy friends have unfortunately labeled her) to take a hike (Quinn can be such an IDIOT sometimes); when Lundy's six sense kicked in and he knew something was fishy about John Lithgow swooping in and "accidentally" dropping his keys (I loved this by the way: ultimate confirmation that Lundy really does deserve the title of Rock Star Serial Killer Catcher); when Dexter had a moment of clarity, an epiphany while he had that cop lady Saran Wrapped and cocooned to the table; when Deb decided to go for it and went with her heart, like she always does. Even the slightly cheesy but somehow sweet storyline of La Guerta and Angel struck a tender chord for me.

In most of these cases, each character's choice to either commit or quit relationships they are in seems to shape and define and propel both their destinies and other people's destinies on collision courses with each other.

It seems to be general consensus that Lundy indeed probably died instantaneously, while Deb will live on, although not without a serious fight. And we can only assume Dexter will have a fire lit underneath him once he hears his baby sister was shot. I am looking forward to a final showdown between John Lithgow the Trinity Killer and Dexter.

I love where this season is going in terms of plot, theme, character development.

Oh yeah, and my favorite theme music is back.

I really can't complain:)